1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - too hard?

  1. Aug 21, 2012 #1
    Hello, I am currently signed up for Fall Quarter Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, and Matrix algebra at the University of Washington.

    Right now I am sort of skeptical if I should drop one of these classes because I have heard horror stories from at least one of each of these classes. I got a B- in calc 2 and A- in calc 1. I understand integration pretty well, but my teacher didn't speak any English at all, so I completely bombed a couple of the tests.

    Is taking all of these together suicide? Keep in mind that I MUST stay in physics.

    Thanks!
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 21, 2012 #2
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    3 courses is considered a very easy semester
     
  4. Aug 22, 2012 #3
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    UW goes on a quarter system
     
  5. Aug 22, 2012 #4
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    That seems very manageable.
     
  6. Aug 23, 2012 #5
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    In terms of math, those are PRETTY much computational classes, so they might take some time, but overall you should be fine if you can manage your time well.
     
  7. Aug 23, 2012 #6
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    I took Physics 2 last year, which is really more geared towards Electrical Engineers...and it was my toughest class, I hated it, because it really was not of any interest and didn't have much to do with my degree, other two shouldn't be too bad...I am not sure what your school's "Engineering Physics" is...probably torque and all that good stuff. That stuff is actually interesting and good for your degree
     
  8. Aug 23, 2012 #7
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    By computational, do you mean they are mostly "cookbook" plug-and-chug type math? I have been reading into Matrix Algebra a little bit and it seems terribly tedious, but after reading into Diff EQ, it seems more straight forward; just lots of integration. Was Matrix Algebra hard for you?
     
  9. Aug 23, 2012 #8
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    My physics class is considered the first physics in the calculus based physics series - It is titled "Mechanics" and geared for engineers and scientists. I am majoring in Electrical Engineering, so that information is good/scary to hear. From what I have heard most of the physics classes at UW have to curved because so many people fail the exams. =(
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2012
  10. Aug 23, 2012 #9
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    I would have to disagree about the matrix algebra class, at least compared to my experience. At uvic, there are 2 matrix algebra/linear algebra courses, one is geared towards the engineers and IS primarily applied linear algebra, but the one that is required for physicists is very proof-based and lays down the foundational theory quite rigorously.
     
  11. Aug 23, 2012 #10
    Re: Engineering Physics, Diff EQ, Matrix Algebra - suicide?

    hahaha soooo true. Physics 1 isn't too bad, Physics 2 was tough, it could have been my teacher though...my advice do the homework and don't slack off...if there is a recitation for the class TAKE IT - this is a MUST. I am lucky to have a friend who is ridiculously smart so he helped me out a lot. Some of the exams were filled with just stupid questions I had never seen, most were conceptual questions where you really have to think. The final exam wasn't too bad I think I got a 78% on it which for that class is amazing haha. Thankfully I am done with all my "basics" sort of classes like Calc 1, Calc 2, Chemistry, Physics 1, and Physics 2, as well as a Solidworks class and general Engineering class - some other classes as well. I am entering the true engineering classes this year, starting classes on Monday. I have Statics which I hear is really tough, so we will see how it goes. My understanding is once your past Thermodynamics, Fluids, and Statics your pretty set. I believe I take all those this year. Of course, those are for Mechanical Engineering so chances are you won't take those for EE. Thankfully math has always been fairly easy for me so thats a big plus in Engineering
     
  12. Aug 24, 2012 #11
    C268. I don't think we have to take Thermodynamics or Fluids, but I know we have to take Engineering Stats which I have heard lots of terrible things about. I know a couple of the guys that are almost done with the EE program, and they said that Electrodynamics is a pretty rough class.. well all of the EE classes are hard, but they said Electrodynamics and Engineering Stats in particular suck.
     
  13. Aug 24, 2012 #12
    As ecneicS pointed, it will depend if your class is proof based or not. If it's proof based, then you will have to actually spend time thinking about your proofs, making sure they actually make sense, etc.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook